8 unusual ways to make your employees feel valued

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By Henry Brown

When running a business, your primary objective is to keep your operations sustainable and profitable. Of course, the way to do that is by having employees that handle various aspects of your company’s daily activities.

In any business, employees are their primary assets. Sadly, some companies don’t see things that way and subsequently end up with high staff turnover rates and low employee retention.

As a responsible employer, it’s your job to make your teams feel valued and appreciated, as they are the two elements that will keep staff retention rates high.

With that in mind, there are some strategies you can try to make your employees feel more valued. They are perhaps unusual ones, but they’re effective at helping achieve the desired objective. Check them out:

1) Give “staying speeches” to team members

Whenever a staff member leaves and you perhaps all have a leaving drink together after work one evening, you’d probably give that person a leaving speech.

Staying speeches are similar, except on the anniversary of their start date with your firm, you tell them how awesome they are in front of their teammates!

Such speeches are also excellent morale and confidence boosters for employees because it shows you actually care about them and the value they add to your business.

2) Create an internal social network

Most, if not all, people at your workplace are familiar with social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

The likelihood is also high that they use them while they’re at work. The thing is, they probably don’t use those social networks to communicate with their peers – especially if they’re in different parts of your premises or at other locations.

One exciting yet unusual way to make your teams feel valued is by encouraging them to use an internal company-wide social network. It’s a great way for managers to engage with team members, and it’s also excellent for forging new friendships with co-workers.

3) Make your workspace fun

When it comes to employee management, you’ll have thought about things like setting up staff handbooks, giving employees details on perks like corporate discounts, and so on.

But have you ever considered offering a “fun” working environment as one of those perks? If not, now’s the perfect time to put that in place!

A fun working environment can be one where color schemes, furniture, and furnishings inspire creativity. It can also be one where employees can relax and unwind in a dedicated recreation room.

4) Become a pioneer in workplace flexibility

In recent months, workplace flexibility has become a hot topic due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Working from home has become the “new normal” for most businesses worldwide, and while social distancing restrictions are easing, many employees prefer this new way of working.

One way to make your staff feel valued is by listening to their concerns about their working hours. The main reason many employees need flexibility is to fit in with their home lives. For example, there’s a need for some staff to take their children to and from school each day.

You could become a pioneer of workplace flexibility by offering such options. Another idea might be to allow staff to complete their work outside of standard business hours, such as when their kids aren’t at school due to holidays.

5) Offer free further education

There’s no denying that many employees are on a constant quest to improve their skills and knowledge, even if some things they want to learn don’t directly relate to their jobs.

Offering free education is one way to boost staff retention rates and show your teams that you value them as important assets.

That might include courses that lead to industry-recognized certification or even university courses that lead to internationally recognized degrees.

6) Reimagine how you allocate holiday times

Although the rules differ between employers, staff generally get holiday allocations each year, with many getting increasing allocations for every year of service they provide.

You might think that holiday allocations aren’t an unusual way of keeping your staff happy. However, what if you reimagine the entire process and not impose a limit? Instead, you could allow employees to take as many or as few days off each year as they want!

It might seem like a radical idea, but it works. Take a look at these 11 companies that have proven how it’s such a great idea!

7) Create a support mailbox for your team

There will be times when your staff have concerns that they would love you to address. The trouble is, emailing a manager or even having a quick meeting with them doesn’t always prove productive as those in charge might forget about actioning those issues.

A better idea is to have a single support inbox address that all employees can email. It can get linked to a tracking system, and a user or team in charge of that inbox can delegate anything that requires action to the appropriate people.

What’s more, because it can get linked to a tracking system, all participants in the conversation will know in real-time who’s doing what and can check the message history at any time.

8) Throw away the traditional office design

Let’s face it: you don’t want your employees to work in a dark and decrepit working environment.

It’s not good for morale, productivity, and potentially people’s health and wellbeing. You want your staff to work in an area that’s safe, inspiring, and fills them with happiness.

That’s why it makes sense to throw away the conventional office design and layout, replacing it with something funky yet functional. Staff that work in a “cool” office environment are more likely to stay working for such forward-thinking employers.

Tech companies like Google are pioneers in this respect because they create workspaces that foster creativity, boost productivity and efficiency, and help employees be at the top of their game each day.

Check out these 20 cool office designs for some ideas.


Henry Brown is an online marketing executive. When he isn’t talking shop, he’s roaming the streets of London, uncovering the extra-ordinary in the ordinary.

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